Message from the Vicars – 24.03.2020

Church buildings closed, but the church is alive and active!




Dear Church, 

We are here in the vicarage “working from home” as many of you are. Following the announcement by the Prime Minister Boris Johnson  last night, we want to encourage all of you to follow the instructions of only going outside your homes if necessary in order to play our part in defeating the Corona virus. The Bishop of Guildford says: “The Church continues to be alive and active – and more creative than ever – but our buildings must close in the Diocese of Guildford. Along with all Church of England churches, the doors of our churches should now be closed, even for private prayers. Celebration of the Eucharist by Parish clergy should be conducted in their homes rather than the church building.”

So, we regret that the churches and the office will be closed from today. You can still email the office [email protected] or phone the vicarage on 01932 917736 and the website will be regulalry updated with all sorts of online activities. We can also pray at any time and in any place, including our homes. Perhaps you want to creat a prayer corner somewhere to go for prayer, bible reading and a moment of quiet in your day.

What’s new in Walton-on-Thames? Activities, prayers, interractive life groups and Bible studies.
•    Our Sunday service for last week and for the Sundays to come will be recorded and available on the website, Twitter and Facebook from 8.00 am each Sunday morning.
•    There is a new St Mary’s and St John’s closed Facebook group to catch up with all our activities and postings.
•    Facebook is a good place to contribute a song, a prayer we like, a prayer request, a funny video or even a Tim Keller lecture for others to enjoy.
•    Cathy has started a Daily Bible study video available each morning using readings from the lectionary, currently Hebrews.
•    Mandy is doing Children’s midweek groups, youth group and Sunday school interractively by facebook groups. They had great fun on Friday and Sunday.
•    Next week we will try an interactive open Life group/House group which anyone can join. We are experimenting with the best method for this.
•    There are also some great books if you find you have time and appetite for a bit of good Christian reading. Contact Alex for more details.

Jonny is getting the Pastoral team up and running, Alex’s Action Team has started by delivering Mothering Sunday flowers and we will be sharing some good news stories from the “Church in the community” on the website and other places. Please do fill in forms on the website every time you need help or can offer help. Thank you.

Let’s help one another stay sane and hopeful in these uncertain times. 
Love God and love our neighbour. Taking our next steps towards deeper faith in Christ, caring for one another and serving our neighbours. We are the church in the community. God is good. He loves us all and he is not about to abandon us now when things get tough.

Every blessing,
Jonny and Cathy